MBS Lending Ltd Conveyancing Panel Information

The information on this page is designed to keep solicitors and licensed conveyancers abreast of latest requirements changes by MBS Lending Ltd and to assist in remaining on the MBS Lending Ltd Conveyancing Panel.

MBS Lending Ltd Solicitor Panel Information:

What are the MBS Lending Ltd conveyancing panel criteria?
Unlike the CML the Building Society Mortgage Instructions deal with this. Section A.12 states ‘In order to act on our behalf your firm or company must be a member of our conveyancing panel provided we are a society that operates one – see specific requirements for details of our arrangements. The Special Requirements state:

All conveyancers are subject to panel requirements and must be approved onto the MBS Lending's conveyancing panel.  Please refer to the mortgage completions team if further information is required.

You must also comply with the terms and conditions of your MBS Lending Ltd solicitor panel appointment.

Can a practice submit a complaint to the BSA about being removed excluded suspended from the MBS Lending Ltd conveyancing panel?
The BSA is an association rather than a regulator and therefore will not investigate complaints against lenders. You can of course contact Lexsure to see if we can assist.
Are the BSA planning on creating a online directory to to identify firms on the MBS Lending Ltd conveyancing panel ?
Lexsure has not been advised of any plans on the part of the BSA to promote such a tool .
Given my firm’s membership on the MBS Lending Ltd conveyancing panel for what period of time am I obliged to retain the original conveyancing file?
The BSA Mortgage Instructions state that the firm must keep the file for at least 6 years from the date of the mortgage. Data imaging is normally suitable compliance with this requirement. As a firm on the MBS Lending Ltd conveyancing panel you must allow MBS Lending Ltd to conduct such reasonable audit of your information security measures as MBS Lending Ltd or their agents may to ensure your compliance with your file retention obligations.
I understand that MBS Lending Ltd could request or audit my files as I am on the MBS Lending Ltd conveyancing panel. How should I respond in the event of such a demand?
We can't comment specifically on MBS Lending Ltd. Many major lenders are now introducing ‘file auditing’ as standard practice in relation to completed matters. This raises questions of confidentiality in relation to the buyer client and the purpose to which the results of such audits will be put. The starting point is to remember that the file does not belong to your firm, it belongs to the ‘client’. But, of course, we will normally have two clients – the buyer and the lender - and you will owe a duty of confidentiality to each. So basically, you have to separate the file and just send the lender the parts solely relating to themselves. But, of course, as this will basically be correspondence with the lender, mortgage instructions etc.

Check with your Compliance Officer, but a firm should not send the complete conveyancing file without the borrower client’s express consent – and if he is in arrears with the lender he is hardly likely to agree. However, if the lender can establish a prima facie case of fraud, then you may be under an obligation to disclose the whole file.

The emerging convention is that lenders are including an authority to disclose in loan application forms to counter this problem. Mortgage Express v Sawali, 2010 EWHC 3054 (Ch) indicates that such provisions valid? Please click here for more information about that case.

As the nominated COLP for my firm are there regulatory implications that I should be considering if my firm is withdrawn off the MBS Lending Ltd solicitor panel?
The answer to this question really depends on the reason that your firm has been removed off the MBS Lending Ltd conveyancing panel. The top 3 reasons are as follows:
  1. lack of transactions
  2. the lawyer is a sole practitioner
  3. as part of the HSBC panel reduction.
In these three circumstances it is unlikely that you would expected to take any action. Disclosure and other compliance considerations are more likely to be relevant if the reason for removal is due to breaches of lender requirements or allegations of fraud or negligence. Whether the reasoning should trigger a disclosable 'material' breach will depend on the firm and the circumstances around possible failures to comply with the SRA Authorisation Rules, and the SRA will judge each case on its own merits. Factors such as the detriment or risk of detriment to clients, the scale of the issue and overall impact on the firm will need to be considered in deciding whether a failure is 'material'. As the COLP you will need systems to identify patterns of breaches. Even if you don't consider there to be regulatory implications, the firms COFA needs to consider whether he or she needs to take any action as result of being removed from the conveyancing panel of MBS Lending Ltd.
The firm that I work for is on the MBS Lending Ltd conveyancing panel. I am dealing with MBS Lending Ltd mortgage on a purchase. My borrower client is asking not to disclose an issue to MBS Lending Ltd. What do I do in this conflict situation?
When a solicitor is acting for both MBS Lending Ltd and borrower there is potential for conflicts to arise. You owe duties to both clients. All information received by you from your client is confidential and cannot be disclosed without the client’s consent.

In your situation, if the purchaser will not consent to the information being passed on to the lender, the solicitor must cease to act for MBS Lending Ltd and it may well be prudent for you to cease to act for the purchaser as well. You must not inform MBS Lending Ltd of the reason for termination of the retainer over and above the fact that a conflict has arisen. The fact that you can no longer act should alert even the most somnambulistic of lenders that something is wrong with the borrower and/or purchase. The fact that you have disinstructed yourself should not affect your MBS Lending Ltd conveyancing panel status.

What lender panels do you receive the most questions about?
BSA lenders do not come within the top 20 lenders in terms of frequency of questions. The most popular lender panels in terms of questions are as follows:

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Average number of days to register title including a charge in favour of MBS Lending Ltd
This information relates to purchase only and not remortgages.
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* Data aggregated from sources including COMPLETIONmonitor